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October  28

Bloomfield's Redevelopment Setback

Bloomfield loses speed in condemnation appeal. This just in, from a press release, issued by attorneys Carlin & Ward of Florham Park:

Judge Barbara Byrd Wecker of the Appellate Division signed an order denying two motions filed by the Bloomfield in Township of Bloomfield v. 110 Washington Street Association. The order was filed on October 24 with the Superior Court of New Jersey. The township asked the court to accelerate their appeal of an earlier decision made by Essex County Assignment Judge Patricia Costello, who threw out Bloomfield’s condemnation complaint against 110 Washington Street in August. In a second motion, Bloomfield asked to supplement the record with additional letters and affidavits that were not submitted earlier to Judge Costello. Both requests were denied.

The appeal will proceed in accordance with the original scheduling order set by the court which stipulates that all briefs and replies must be filed by December 5, 2005. This will set back any implementation of Bloomfield’s redevelopment project for at least a year while the case goes through the appeal process. Bloomfield has refused to move forward on any other cases involving eminent domain or relocation while the appeal is pending.

In another action, the township denied property owner Alessandro Lardieri the building permits required to finish approximately 3000 square feet of his building at 622 Bloomfield Avenue. The township rejected Lardieri’s application, premised on its redevelopment plan and agreement with Forest City Ratner, which gives the redeveloper all redevelopment rights over properties within the redevelopment area.

For more eminent domain reading, click here.

October 28, 2005 in Controversy | Permalink


this whole thing really sucks, Bloomfield is going to destroy (if they can) terrific urban fabric to replace it with the most mundane of mundane and resources that can be found everywhere. All rather than exploit what they have that is already special.

In the meantime, if the actual condemnation does not happen, the small business owners will go broke, defending their rights against an oppressive government. These guys will probably go broke paying the taxes that support the government lawyers.

Isn't this why we have the fourth amendment?

Posted by: Kevin Lee Allen | Oct 28, 2005 10:54:33 AM

In the meantime - help support the small business by heading out to Human Palace today! Their spicy wontons are great.

Posted by: hrhppg | Oct 28, 2005 10:58:55 AM

They really are killing us - my store has shown marked decrease since this whole fiasco, and I sit here suffering with the one other business owner left that did not leave when they came around.

It is insane, and if any lawyers read this, we need help!


Posted by: Guido Sanchez | Oct 28, 2005 11:39:42 AM

Uh, did you mean "Hunan," Your Royal Highness? I mean there were great famines in China, but I didn't think it got that bad...:)

Posted by: Conan the Grammarian | Oct 28, 2005 11:40:24 AM


Yes Conan, I meant Hunan, not human. Ewwww......

Posted by: hrhppg | Oct 28, 2005 11:42:09 AM

We sometimes refer to that restaurant as the 'Humane Place' because of it's vegitarian menu

Posted by: MKG | Oct 28, 2005 12:36:46 PM

I've been a Bloomfield resident for a few years now and all of this saddens me greatly. Like many residents, I'm all for improving the overall appearance of the area and giving it the economic kickstart that it needs to truly thrive and see it's real potential, however, to displace helpless independent business owners in the interest of creating what is sure to be yet another utterly generic, franchise laced urban/suburban downtown shopping district is just wrong. These developers have deep, deep pockets and endless resources, so while this "project" sits in legal limbo, businesses will fail and the area will go spiral further downhill. Instead of cozying up in bed with these development corporations the town and state governments should serve as advocates for the existing businesses. This may sound naive (granted, I really don't know or even understand all of the particualrs here) but why not create a redevelopment system of some sort that will provide grants to the existing small businesses and property owners to make improvements and provide incentives to individuals attempting to open small businesses to bring their ideas and visions to this area of Bloomfield. Again, I may be ranting without a thorough understanding of the issues here, but why not start with what we've got and allow real people and business owners with a true, vested interest in the town to build on that rather than settle for another bland, faceless, greed-based urban redevelopment that does NOTHING for the people who actually live there?

Posted by: somecloud | Oct 28, 2005 12:50:13 PM


Just glad it wasn't a Freudian sleep.

I have not found a lot of decent, authentic Chinese food here in the suburbs. There are a couple of reasonably decent places, but when we want the real thing we go into Gotham (usually to Grand Sichuan International). I very much like Hunanese food - especially Shrimp in Hunan Sauce. Being new to Bloomfield, we will try the Palace and hope for the best.

Posted by: Conan the Grammarian | Oct 28, 2005 12:51:46 PM

All I know is, as it sits, I do not go to Bloomfield center to shop or eat. It's gross and in need of help.
I do feel bad for the current property owners. I hope they get a fair deal for their land.

Posted by: grme | Oct 28, 2005 1:04:09 PM

Yes, it's in need of help, I agree completely, but the property owners simply will NOT get a "fair deal" for their land. That's the problem... well, one of many problems with eminent domain. The town is stumbling into this whole this blinded and ass-backwards. "Development" is NOT necessarily synonomous with "improvement", regardless of the sum being spent.

Posted by: somecloud | Oct 28, 2005 1:17:01 PM

*"Development" is NOT necessarily synonomous with "improvement", regardless of the sum being spent.*

Very true! That has been proven in recent years with Newark building NJPac and the Bears arena.

Selling out locals to some developer is so sleazy I can't believe it isn't illegal. Why not really go back to our country's dark ages and have the Calvary give the business owners blankets with small pox.

Posted by: hrhppg | Oct 28, 2005 1:31:21 PM

hrhppg, I take it you meant Cavalry as in the 19th century.

Posted by: Krys | Oct 28, 2005 1:49:04 PM

We moved here after the redevelopement plan was done. It is not ideal and Forest City's website doesn't make me feel too optimistic about what will be built. I contacted the mayor and asked that the construction at least be as green and sustainable as possible. He was open to the idea, as there is some funding available at least for the affordable housing portion of the developement. Our meeting was cancelled when all this went on hold. We'll see where it goes...

Posted by: ChrisB | Oct 28, 2005 1:50:49 PM

hrhppg, I like that! The small pox thing is quite an apt analogy.

Posted by: somecloud | Oct 28, 2005 1:57:39 PM

Yes Krys. Just like we tossed the Indians aside, developers are doing the same to local businesses. Maybe in 200 yeras we'll be giving the businesses owners great grandchildren casinos.

Posted by: hrhppg | Oct 28, 2005 2:13:22 PM

It should be noted that there have been grants and other programs in place for awhile now to help existing businesses improve themselves. Some, like Murdoch's Shoes, took advantage of them, with fine results. The vast majority are either undercapitalized or not interested in improving their facades and have not done so. Although there are some worthwhile successful businesses in Bloomfield Center, many are just marginal and don't take care of their property. This is why the redevelopment is needed. Also please keep in mind that some of these 'small businesses' that are fighting eminent domain are actually wealthy millionaires whose families own properties all over the country. They are fighting eminent domain in hope of getting more money for their property than the fair market value it was assessed at. There are two sides to every story.

Posted by: mauigirl52 | Nov 1, 2005 8:50:21 AM

Is there any new information on the redevelopment? Is everything still on hold?

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